The Strengths Guy’s guide to using your Significant 7 Strengthscope® strengths in influencing


  1. If you want to know how to use one of your (or someone else’s) Top 7 strengths in an influencing situation, look through the list below where each strength is listed alphabetically.
  2. Make sure that you are careful to avoid the overdrive risk also described for each strength by developing a strategy or two to deal with the risk.

Working with the other person to find a ‘win-win’ where both parties benefit.
Beware: seeking consensus where it won’t happen; assuming other people are collaborative too.

Common sense
Giving concrete examples and building your case on these; seeking tried and tested approaches.
Beware: missing the new thinking/new approaches.

Demonstrating sympathy to others’ needs; accommodating others’ needs where appropriate.
Beware being taken advantage of; not getting what you want.

Sticking to your principles; suggesting options other people dare not mention.
Beware: becoming entrenched in a point of view and defending it at all costs.

Thinking outside the box to find a new way of persuading/influencing; breaking through blockages by throwing new light on an issue.
Beware: coming up with new approaches when they are not needed.

Critical thinking
Breaking down issues objectively into their component parts for closer examination, to find ‘the truth.’
Beware: being overly critical of others’ perspectives too early in discussions.

Moving others to a quick conclusion or quickly through an apparent impasse.
Beware: forcing decisions too quickly when they need discussion/reflection.

Detail orientation
Covering all the details of proposals or issues; ensuring that important details are properly recorded.
Beware: missing the strategic/long term perspective.

Developing others
Helping others to become more effective influencers by sharing knowledge and expertise; looking for opportunities for others to learn.
Beware: always looking for opportunities to develop when another approach (such as telling) would be more beneficial.

Setting up systems to record and track key aspects of negotiations and discussions.
Beware: being seen as too inflexible and not wanting to deviate from the plan.

Emotional control
Using your emotions with great care; defusing situations; showing others the emotions you want to show them; being careful with body language.
Beware: coming across as aloof or dispassionate.

Seeking to understand the other person’s point of view in order to more effectively influence them.
Beware: getting too caught up in their point of view to service your own needs.

Utilising the positive, infectious edge that your enthusiasm brings to discussions.
Beware: overwhelming others before they’ve had time to reflect or ‘buy in’ to an idea.

Moving the discussion in different directions to explore alternative possibilities.
Beware: inconsistency or indecisiveness about final direction/decision.

Starting up negotiations/discussions while others hold back.
Beware: jumping in too quickly before others are ready.

Influencing others towards the goal – taking the group with you.
Beware: others with a Leading strength, which may lead to a power struggle.

Looking for the positive outcome and making sure that others consider this too.
Beware: leaving too much to chance through lack of planning.

Creating convincing arguments communicated in a convincing way.
Beware: being seen as manipulative or as not focusing on others buying in.

Relationship building
Laying groundwork for rapport – finding out about others personally and using this to build goodwill.
Beware: forgetting to state position/arguments for the sake of maintaining goodwill.

Keeping going when negotiation/conversation seems to have hit an impasse; finding and overcoming challenges.
Beware: turning smaller issues into major challenges just to stay engaged.

Results focus
Reminding other parties about the need to achieve objectives; keeping people focused on outcomes.
Beware: forgetting the ‘people’ aspects of influencing/negotiation.

Directing others towards a particular way of thinking; communicating certainty in your views.
Beware: appearing arrogant or presenting a proposal as a ‘done deal.’

Looking for opportunities to learn and gain self-insights to improve performance.
Beware: becoming too inward-focused when an external focus is more helpful.

Strategic mindedness
Projecting forward to ‘scenario plan’; synthesising a range of views.
Beware: looking for patterns/relationships between issues when none exist.